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Getting Started with US Online Poker

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How to Choose a Secure Site

Basically, in this day and age, you should start thinking in terms of just being safe all the time — you never know where or how e-criminals will strike.

On that basis, when playing US sites, you’ll have to arrange banking methods other than US-based credit cards or services, anyway, because of federal laws. If you choose those correctly, then you can also stay safe.

The following is a short list of reputable casinos where Americans play, and it should get you going:

  • Silver Oak
  • Lucky Red Casino ($4,000 welcome bonus)
  • Bodog/Bovada
  • Full Tilt Poker
  • PokerStars
  • Miami Club ($800 in bonuses)
  • Club World ($777 bonus)
  • Caesars Poker

How to Sign Up

There will be a normal registration process regardless, but depending upon the state or location some additional verifications will be required of you.

In order to receive free welcome bonuses, you are usually asked to provide a future payment method that is not hit until you deposit.

In states like Delaware, New Jersey or Nevada, technologies that check phone number, IP address and so on are used to make sure the player is inside the state where gambling is legal.

How to Deposit

The main problem online and mobile gaming for real cash is confronting is the face that no US financial institution can process gambling funds in any way. That makes it difficult and tricky for players in states with legal online casinos, or, players who choose to find sites that will accept them.

Depositing will either involve a traditional mailed or wired payment, or, various alternative methods that are already commonly used across the sea (like Ukash, Neteller, Eco and even PayPal’s services abroad).

If you are in states with big casinos like Nevada, then the online gaming while you’re visiting a resort, for instance, will be integrated with your house credits to make things smoother.

How to Play

Playing mobile games at US sites is as easy as other international casino sites — in many cases, America brands are making partnerships with European gaming companies. You can bet that the US online casino scene will evolve in short order to match the user-friendly game systems in the UK or Europe.

How to Withdraw

Based upon what we said above — about federal laws banning domestic banks from gambling business — you might think you could simply use a service like Western Union to process your transactions. But, that won’t work necessarily. You’ll have to find a foreign e-wallet solution in most cases.

There will be more services available as gambling in the US grows some roots and makes space for itself, including banking concessions. For example, some casinos like BitZino allow player to deposit and withdraw using the absolutely anonymous BitCoin online currency (an American invention).

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USA Real Money Poker Online

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US mobile poker is on the rise, because more states are moving toward legalization — that is, while the Federal laws (and the Obama administration) preserve a certain loophole that exists in the nation’s telecommunications law. This could change if certain Congress members and lobbyists succeed in passing new anti-gambling laws.

Top US Online Poker

The top US poker sites are probably Full Tilt, PokerStars and Bovada (aka BoDog) in terms of brand recognition. Some of that fanfare, of course, was earned through the notoriety of getting busted by the US Feds, strangely! But, all is back to normal now with them, and players are happy.

Just because the big dogs have speckled pasts doesn’t mean American mobile Poker is off to a sketchy, shadowy start. The opposite is true: as states that legalize online gambling write their new laws, license contracts and tax codes (the process of regulating a marketplace for casino entertainment), plenty of scrutiny is falling on this new area business.

Some big European casino brands like 888 are providing consulting to American land-based casinos as they transition online. Already much money is being invested by mega brands like Caesars to catch an early lead.

Legal Background

Legally, real-money gaming has been prohibited in the USA for a long time, aside from designated places in certain states that passed legalization. The online version of casinos is strictly prohibited for Americans.

However, certain national wire-tap laws have a flexibility in their wording, which any individual state could use as a legal basis to regulate online gambling within that state. The capability to keep the gaming within a certain area has been a technical obstacle.

So far, the Obama administration has not pursued the handful of states that have legalized online and mobile casinos. They are Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada, of course.

New challenges from various centers of power in the political and casino worlds are introducing new legislation that will specifically outlaw the movement of gambling online (for fear it will hurt children when accessible from home computers, laptops and the family iPad or iPhone).

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Legal States

The currently-legal states for gambling mentioned above have had land-based gambling for some time (some of it in Indian reservations, which is legally present in many states with indigenous peoples in them).

The motives include protecting their pro-gambling reputations, their ‘brands’ for tourism, while also using their brand-name advantages to form early leads, vying with other legal states. The mighty Vegas has the most to lose and to gain, so Nevada was the first state to really spearhead its online casino.

The next state with a hot seat in this market is New Jersey, with its runner-up brand to Vegas, Atlantic City, which has the benefit of having a beach, to boot.

While the big payoff to states is the tourism boom aimed at casino-lovers (especially if the Great Recession eases off), the other big draw for progressive states is the immense tax influx from casinos’ rising profits. Those taxes will ease states’ budget crises and improve the lives of even those people who don’t gamble.

Next to Legalize

With the success of the forerunners above, new states definitely will consider this powerful form of state taxation income. Already, Washington DC, a small quasi-state, had its own pro-gambling agenda move forward (called iGaming) in the courts — only to get mired in a corruption case. In DC, that figures!

About 10-15% of American states are known to have courted with getting into the USA online poker and casino racket, so to speak! Americans have always love gambling; it has figured in the formation of the country, politically and economically. The UK, perhaps even bigger bettors, already have a successful regulated gambling scheme.

Even a massive state like California is cautiously studying this move — but since it is as large as a small country, with an astronomical economy, the dangers are large if it is a mistake to legalize. It will likely start with limited gaming, like just Poker, or enhanced lottery games.

2014 Outlook

We’re feeling quite excited about this year in online and mobile casino entertainment, and for the first time we can include 3 great states that have legalized Web-based gambling within their borders.

Any person willing to put cash on their clicks in the US has had certain problems with the banking side of things — Federal law still prohibits any bank or credit card to process gambling money.

The bank account tie-ups for players are in one area that will improve dramatically in 2014, and henceforth. Creative payment methods (like Europe’s Ukash and Neteller) will grow up here to meet the demand, with PayPal-Casino services in an early lead.

Online security is pretty much solved for players and for casinos. The top software available has made even mobile banking easy and safe (if you use alternatives to credit cards).

But fraud (that is, by the owners of mobile casinos) could continue to be a real problem — there is an awful lot of money to be made in the opening US market.

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Skrill-Accepting Mobile Poker

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Skrill is an interesting and unique online payment tool. This service by MoneyBrokers works like an e-wallet, yet does not require a new balance of funds. Simply, Skrill acts as a secure gateway that you alone access, which debits or deposits to your existing banking accounts.

For those players who would rather not have to establish a new e-wallet account balance, Skrill is ideal. Most of the consumer market is focused upon headliner services like PayPalCasino and Neteller, however Skrill is quietly becoming ever-present. It is featured at casinos like the following top mobile poker destinations.

888

This is a keystone online and mobile casino. The reason we can say that is that 888 has its own in-house design house, Dragonfish. This is famous software for a spectrum of gamers, from bingo to sports betting to, world-class Poker. 888 matches your first deposit up to £200 to give it a try. [Read Review]

TIP: At the time of writing, 888 is offering £88 in free, no-deposit needed bonus credit — you should look out for this special! This is the Web’s best no-deposit bonus right now.

Mobile poker from 888 is slick, and custom-built for its own sophisotcated players. Of course, it’s available to Android, Apple and Windows users. This is high-performance, multi-player and live poker, people.

Switch Poker

Switch is another serious, and a bit glamourous poker destination, with a huge £600 welcome package that will attract high-rollers. Another indication you have of the clientele is the fact that Switch is a Bitcoin-enabled casino (with 24/7 service, by the way). This is not a casual gamers hotspot. This is for real Poker players.

The native apps are available on Apple and Android. Interestingly, in keeping with Switch’s serious approach, its poker apps are available to license as a fully functioning ‘white label’ or customised room, a private online poker system, for real cash. Think about that. It’s a novel concept. [Read Review]

RedKings

RedKings is powerd by the E-Gaming Online system. It is a powerful mobile poker app for Android and Apple. This site also hosts sports betting, and a full casino, yet it puts Poker in its own arena. RedKings mobile poker is for a whole range of players, served by six sign-up bonuses one chooses according to whether comp points or deposit matches are desired. [Read Review]

TIP: If you like the RedKings/EGO poker offering, you’ll want to hook up with its TeamRedKings Twitter stream, and of course its Facebook page.

Skrill Counts

For reasons we have mentioned, let alone the presence of Skrill services at the poker spots above, or the entire Web of casinos (most of which embrace Skrill players), this payment method has an important place in the market. It provides more choice within the e-wallet services available. As a unique service, Skrill should be a catalyst for other alternatives not only to credit cards but to services like PayPal or Neteller as well.

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Neteller for Mobile Poker Sites

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Today we’re comparing three standout mobile-compatible casinos for you, with special attention upon their Neteller banking facilities. There are very good reasons to use this popular e-wallet — you should certainly be aware of the Neteller option.

The truth is that nobody can really afford to expose themselves online, in the way using credit or debit card unfortunately does expose personal details. Wouldn’t you rather just plug in a number to deposit to your casino account — rather than supply all sorts of personal facts at that time to verify your credit card?

Why should we go through all these hoops just so casinos can be safe when they take our credit cards? Why not flip the situation? Just use a payment option that keeps you safe, while also being accepted by casinos that are happy about its reliability, too. Neteller is one of the best.

Top-Notch Neteller Casinos

888Poker

This software by Dragonfish (888’s own company) is so very good that you might play it at other casinos that have licensed it. This is why 888 is special: it makes its own gaming system, promotions and so on especially for its community.

Its bonus of up to £200 is generous when you consider how much higher quality are the product and services from 888. [Read Review]

Switch Poker

You’ll bag up to £600 in your welcome package from Switch, which offers its mobile poker gaming to Android and Apple players. We recommend that you use your £5 free no-deposit bonus simply to get used to this distinctive software, the the community of players using it. [Read Review]

RedKings

If you like your mobile poker stylish, maybe a little saucy, then RedKings will deliver. Its E-GamingOnline system is advanced enough to offer you sports betting, casino and poker attractions under one roof. It gives you six sign-up bonus options — we suggest the Fixed Deposit Bonuses of 100%. [Read Review]

E-Wallets and Cash Vouchers

The only drawback, really, to a Neteller account is that you will have to learn how to use its copious and useful features. Those features are pretty much the same as PayPal, its nearest competitor.

In that specific comparison, it is true that Neteller’s reach globally is limited, compared to PayPal services. But, Neteller is more commonly offered by casinos!

Those are conventional e-wallets, in which you establish a new online balance using other banking services you have. There is another way, and even more options will emerge this year and onward.

Skrill’s ‘e-wallet’, for example, leverages your existing accounts without the need of maintaining a new, separate Skrill balance. It is a gateway to your main finances without giving away your identity online.

Another option, cash vouchers like Ukash, Paysafecard or others, can be useful in a jam (like, when you need a quick £5 booster for mobile poker), but these won’t help if you need to withdraw your win.

If you want to be lucky, and win, then actually withdraw that cash, then the only way to go is an e-wallet, and Neteller is the strongest option at the moment within the online and mobile casino marketplace.

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